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John's Story

I’ve been working with my student, who I will call John, for almost a year and a half now. John still only admits to close friends his need for help with writing and spelling. He is a skilled tradesperson, who works full time and also on part time projects. Between that and keeping a love life going, John does not have a lot of time, but I know that he considers our sessions important and he has never missed one without good reason. In John’s normal work day, the only material he may be reading is blueprints. He is a graduate of the French school system, and he never developed English writing skills. This has occasionally embarrassed and limited him. Our normal sessions are weekly, and we usually catch up first with what’s happen-ing in our lives. He’s become my friend and buddy; we have fun and laugh our way through the lessons. We’ve been working through the Patterns of Spelling series. We’re now on book 4, and we’ve decided from the condition of the material, that perhaps no one has ever done this before. But what I’m most proud of is that John has discovered the joy of reading. He’s worked his way through a number of books, like The Kite Runner (his and my personal favourite), The Life of Pi and a lot more. I know that soon John will be beyond my ability to help him with reading skills, but the joy of reading will always be with him, and that will help him retain what he's learned.